Antoinette Talley
Antoinette Talley
  • January 1, 1923 - December 12, 2017
  • Encinitas, California

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Jan.1, 1923 - Dec. 12, 2017

Encinitas, CA

Antoinette (Toni) Talley, 94, passed away suddenly on Dec. 12, 2017 in Encinitas, CA.

Born and raised in Blue Island, Illinois, she chose to pursue a career in nursing, becoming the first woman ever to graduate from Loyola University - Chicago in 1943 After completing her medical training and receiving a nursing degree from Columbia University - Chicago, she enlisted as a 1st Lieutenant in the U.S. Army and was stationed in Le Mans, France from May 1944 to January 1946.

After military service, she pursued a Master's Degree in Psychology at Loyola. She was employed by St. Francis Hospital in Blue Island in 1951 and rose to become the Head Nurse for Pediatrics before retiring in 1978. She then moved to Encinitas, California and worked part-time as a pediatric nurse at Children's Hospital in San Diego, finally retiring for good in 1993 at age 70.

During her lifetime she loved gardening, baking, needlepoint / sewing, traveling, and her yearly visit to the Carlsbad Flower Fields. Her most cherished highlight was a 1996 trip back to France in for the World War II 50th Anniversary in Normandy, France. She was moved to tears upon seeing the now grassy field which was the location of her forward medical unit during the war. She also visited the City of Paris, beaches of Normandy, the famous Saint - Mere - Eglise church, Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial above Omaha Beach in Colleville-sur-Mer, France.

She had a life-long love affair with books, being a passionate reader her entire life, sometime consuming as many as five books a week. In her younger years, she was involved as a volunteer in the Girls Scouts, Boy Scouts, the Blue Island Little League, the Y.M.C.A., and the Blue Island schools.

This past October was one of the most joyous times in her life, blessed with her first great-grandchild Alessia Paige Callahan. She was the strongest and most accomplished woman of her time. She will be greatly missed by family and friends.

Toni was married in 1951 and raised three children before divorcing in 1968. She is survived by her three children, Janice Lee Callahan, Paul Michael Talley, and Lee R. Talley; Also, son-in-law Donald T. Callahan Jr., grandchildren Donald P. Callahan, and Sean T. Callahan (Margaret); her brother Mike Zolfo, and sisters Theresa Schultz, Mary Brown, and Betty Kapocuis.

Interment will be at Miramar National Cemetery late December or early January. In lieu of flowers donations can be made to her favorite charities, the USO, the Wounded Warriors Project, Salvation Army, the March of Dimes, and the American Cancer Society.